Race Space With Danielle Wright: CEO and Activist

On February 9, Ms. Maseelall, Dr. Robinson, and Madame Borrmann hosted WRA’s first Race Space of the second semester. Held in the Green Key, the event featured great snacks such as Pocky and an even better guest speaker.

The guest speaker that evening was Danielle Wright, founder and CEO of Wright Relations, a resource that allows businesses and people to make connections and relationships with others. Ms. Wright has held a long interest in serving people since she was a kid, whether that means working with people through public relations, community service, and coaching sports. After attending the esteemed HBCU Hampton University, where she learned and developed experience working in Division I and II athletics, communications, and development. Now, she works as a digital web designer and residential life staff member at Gilmore Academy, a boarding, private, Catholic school where she supervises 70 students at a coed dormitory. In addition, she supervises the Black Student Alliance and works with Gilmore students to inform and educate about black culture and the importance of diversity of thought. As an ordained minister, Ms. Wright is also certified and willing to share advice and knowledge about spiritual manners as well. Currently, she is in the works of creating a devotional for teens based on her religious experience and insights.

Rather than focusing on a specific issue, this race space was unique in that it was a sharing of experiences as to what it’s like to be a black person in America and several insightful questions about black culture and challenging societal norms. Initially, Ms. Wright started by telling the story of what it was like for her growing up as a minority, and from there, students were given the opportunity to express their opinions and engage in meaningful conversation. The subject of the conversation went from religious beliefs to the usage of certain racially explicit lyrics in music. After expressing her opinion on any question she was asked, Ms. Wright would ask to hear other opinions, fostering an environment of being able to communicate with one another about such ideas and opinions.

While mandatory for those in Ms. Maseelall’s ECHO, all students present seemed to enjoy the activity. Contrary to the bored expressions one might expect from students attending a lecture, the students engaged deeply with the speaker, creating an environment that fostered safe discussion of thoughts and ideas.

– Jasmine Wheeler ’20

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